Q & A: Lure Selection for Walleye

August 22, 2016

Q & A: Lure Selection for Walleye

Angler Resources: Why is color of a lure important?
Matt West: While some colors seem to always produce fish, selecting the correct color is very important. Matching the species of baitfish in your lake or region is essential, as is keeping true to several basic color selection rules. When targeting fish such as walleye, use bright, vibrant, flashy colors on sunny days. When you are fishing in low light or cloudy conditions, stick to dull, darker colors such as black, purple, or white colored baits. While this rule of thumb does not always apply, matching baitfish patterns should always find its way into your fishing routine.

AR: What colors and color combinations are walleye attracted to?
MW: While there are thousands of color combinations for walleye fishing and every angler has their "secret pattern," sticking to basic rules will outline what colors to use. The most basic and most productive colors for targeting walleye are purple and green. These colors come in a variety of shades and can be used in a large range of depths. For sunny days, select bright or flashy purple or green, and for cloudy days try a solid, darker green or purple. Almost every color has a place in walleye fishing. Red disappears very quickly under the water column and while it is not as well known as a top walleye color, it is very effective during daylight hours in shallow water. Silver and gold patterns will all depend on the body of water you are fishing. Typically gold is a great producer when a lake turns over or the water is dirty.

AR: Why are size and weight of a lure important?
MW: Picking the right size and weight for lures is extremely important. There are many times, by slimming down or bulking up the size, a lure will put more fish in the box. Usually when the fish are more active and feeding, selecting the correct size is not as important. Changing to smaller sized baits after a cold front is a very popular choice. Knowing the size of the baitfish the targeted fish are feeding on is essential when picking the correct size of lure. The weight of the lure is most important when casting baits and not trolling. Picking the correct size can play a big role in catching fish. If you are using jigs and bouncing them off the bottom, picking too small of a jig will keep your bait out of the strike zone longer. A jig that is too big may snag up or spook fish.

AR: What does size influence?
MW: Size influences many factors when fishing. While the old saying is "big baits catch big fish" this is not always the case. Selecting large baits can limit the amount of fish you catch. For example, if you are using a six-inch lure for targeting walleye, this may work for larger fish, but smaller fish may avoid the larger bait.

AR: What does weight influence and why is the depth ability of a lure important?
MW: The weight of a lure can affect how deep a lure can dive and the action of the lure. Adding weight too close to a lure can hinder the action of the lure and not adding enough weight can take you out of the target depth. When trolling it is a very common practice to add weight 50 feet from your lure. This will allow the lure to run correctly and will make it easier to judge how deep your bait is running. Weight is very important when casting lures. If you select baits lighter than recommended for the rod you are using.

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